My writer Tania experienced all that the Parmelia Hilton had to offer from the hotel facilities to the food a couple of weeks ago. Read on for what she thought…
Three words come to mind when I step from my car outside the Parmelia Hilton – elegant, classy and … shiny. Everything gleams, from the floor tiles to the massive letters that spell out the iconic name, to the teeth of every single employee. Dazzling smiles emanate from the porter as he heaves my heavy suitcase from the boot (I know I’m only staying overnight but a girl has to be prepared for any eventuality!) – the valet as he whisks away my Mazda – the receptionist as she passes me the room key and housekeeping as I try to negotiate my wheelie bag through the hallways (it has the mind of a shopping trolley).
After a quick dip in the outdoor pool, (which is a blessing on a 34 degree Perth day), I meet up with the Marketing and Communications Manager, Julia Clark and Anna Mansfield, PEPR Publicity, for a pre-dinner drink, in the sleek Adelphi Bar. It formerly resided in an arcade, tucked away from view. Fast forward two and a half years and a refurbishment has promoted the Adelphi Bar and Grill to the Parmelia Hilton’s anchor restaurant, now situated at the forefront of the hotel. Passersby can enter via the street, or take advantage of Perth’s mild weather by eating in the allocated alfresco area.
The bar is well stocked with a variety of wines averaging $10 – $15 per glass, assorted beers including $10.50 for a bottle of Corona, ciders and $19 cocktails. When we move into the restaurant, the first thing I notice is the open stainless steel kitchen which allows us to watch the chefs prepare our food.
Adelphi Bar and Grill is well lit and the large square tables are spaced adequately apart so as not to encroach on other patrons’ conversations, leaving enough room to reach the salad bar without squeezing between chairs.
Chef, Chad Miskiewicz, who has been at Hilton’s for 14 years, has kept favourites on the menu like the mouth-watering delicacy Carpaccio, with paper thin beef, rocket and truffle mayo, which tastes amazing, but he has also added new items to the $19 shared plates. We are treated to roasted cauliflower with crumbed bocconcini which gives a spicy kick to the perfectly cooked florets, while scallops with chick peas offer a tasty alternative to the subtle flavours of the duck and black bean soft tacos. Between the five of us, we polish everything off.
The debris is quickly swept away and our mains arrive swiftly after. All dishes are served with sides and we are able to help ourselves to the fully stocked salad bar, which includes gluten free options of coleslaw and a chicken, bean and capsicum mixed salad, as well as marinated olives and pickles. Adelphi Bar & Grill’s menu is extensive with steak and seafood heavily represented, plus a smattering of appealing alternative dishes which makes choosing difficult. My dining companions enviously vote my $38 grilled half chicken with dauphinoise potatoes and leek, as the most appetising looking meal. The chicken is moist, the potatoes melt in my mouth and the leek is an excellent accompaniment.
The $45 south west 220 gram steaks are pleasantly plump, at least 2cm thick, this is what my dining companions thought. Martin tells me that the ‘fiery fillet’ is cooked to perfection and has more spice than heat, so the flavours of the meat are not overpowered. The chips are seasoned well and crunchy. Cynthia orders the same steak minus the spices and agrees that it is difficult to find somewhere that cooks steak exactly how you like it, which the Adelphi succeeds at. Julia orders the $42 salmon which again is a decent size and we add $10 sides of wild carrots and sautéed mushrooms to complete the main course. Everything is delicious. Portion sizes are so generous that we all struggle to finish. But inexplicably there is always room for dessert.
Chad leaves the kitchen to introduce himself to us and explains his signature dish is a chocolate raspberry tart with vanilla ice-cream and chocolate fudge sauce, however we were served mini sorbet ice-creams in chocolate cones, presented on specially drilled paddles. The citrus flavours are tangy and refreshingly cold and the cone remains crunchy. One is not enough, so I had two! Chocolate pastry with strawberry filling, ice-cream topped with a large white chocolate disc is decadent but not too sickly sweet.
We then had a fruit platter on semifreddo which was a light and tasty dish to finish up on. Chad acknowledges that flavour is obviously the most important ingredient in a meal but stresses that ‘eye appeal’ is also necessary. He’s right, everything tastes as good as it looks.
Waddling up to my room, I am too tired and full to take advantage of the flat screen television but use the free wifi to update social media before being swallowed up by the king sized bed. It is so comfortable I feel like I’m cocooned in a cloud and the constant hum of the air conditioner lulls me to sleep.
I’m up early for my complimentary buffet breakfast and even after the amount of food I ingested the night before, my stomach rumbles at the aromas wafting from the bain-marie in the Adelphi Bar and Grill. I bypass the myriad cereal choices but can’t refrain from snatching a croissant to eat with my scrambled eggs, bacon, tomato and hash browns (plural as I can’t stop at one). I ignore the sausages, beans and pastries because I do have limits! I would much rather go out for lunch or dinner but I am suitably impressed with the array of appetising food on offer for breakfast. The eggs are fluffy and far from bland, the croissant is buttery and the hash browns not too oily. I do prefer my bacon crispier but that’s just me. I washed it down with a refreshing pineapple juice which always tastes better at a restaurant than out of a carton.
As a guest of Parmelia Hilton, I meet with Julia at 9am for a tour of the kitchens led by Chef, Michael Schmidt. I am astounded as to how many kitchens there are. But after being told maximum capacity in one night could reach 700 people, I understand! The one we see from the restaurant is where breakfast is prepared on one side while lunch is prepared on the other. There is also a main kitchen, staff kitchen, butcher’s kitchen and cool room, banquet kitchen, a large dishwashing area and a pastry kitchen. It is in the latter one we attempt to make donuts by rolling out dough, create little shapes with a cookie cutter and deep fry them before injecting with Nutella or lemon filling. Eating them warm is an experience that must be repeated. The filling squirts in your mouth with each bite and the flavour lingers on your lips.
The tour ends in a newly refurbished King Premier Suite where we eat more! Pannacotta and tiny chocolate treats are arranged on the same gold plated Wedgewood crockery that the Queen ate off in 1978 during her Silver Jubilee.
If you want to be treated like royalty then I highly recommend you indulge in an overnight stay in this grand old building and feast like a king in the Adelphi Bar and Grill. You won’t be disappointed. Visit the Parmelia Hilton website for rates and more details.
Tania is a freelance writer who makes the most of Perth’s spectacular weather by frequenting coastal cafes, preferring to hibernate in the winter. Tasty food, ice-cold drink and interesting companion or can’t-put-down book are all the simple pleasures she needs to get through the day.
Disclaimer: foodie cravings was provided overnight accommodation and meals as a guest of Parmelia Hilton. See disclosure policy for more details.